My Review : CHAAMP

My Review : CHAAMP
For a change ,I decided to watch & write the review of a bengali film rather than a Bollywood film.
It’s definitely not because I am currenty in Kolkata,its because the bad reviews & the bad word of mouth publicity of Salman Khan’s Tubelight didn’t quite encouraged me to watch it.
Anyway, I am not gonna say that ‘Chaamp’ is a perfect film..but watching a Bengali film after a long time,that too with my parents meant a lot to me.
So this EID, Our very own super star DEV took precedence over Sallu bhai.
 
If ever a recent commercial bengali film project had some high-horsepower sponsorship, it’s “Chaamp.”
Dev stars in his own written story about a local amateur boxer who gets a chance to fight a heavyweight championship bout.
Raj Chakravorty’s latest flick plays on every human’s ultimate fantasy to conquer against all odds and take home the trophy. Here the trophy stands as a metaphor for the realisation of one’s most precious dreams. And that is precisely what makes Chaamp a universal subject to identify with and feel for.
Also Boxing is the basic premise of the story. Expectedly, there is a whole lot of dishoom – dishoom going on all through the movie. true action film buffs might feel the rush of adrenalin on witnessing the tackily executed boxing scenes.
Some genuinely strong emotional impact emerges from the heavy environment of the boxing ring and gymnasium sweat provided by director Raj Chakraborty.
The PR juggernaut is already at high speed, the Kolkata public might love this film.
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‘Chaamp’ does fit into the category of a cliched sports drama about an under dog ‘those that seek to uplift through a rags-to-riches story’,but the very best way to enjoy Chaamp” is not to examine it too carefully; better simply to relax and let the film roll in front of you.
 
Synopsis :
A small town amateur boxer ‘Sivaji Sanyal’ from Purulia gets a surprise shot at fighting for the heavyweight championship.While at the same time he finds love in the arms of an extrovert girl ‘Jaya’ who is a daughter of a rich industralist.
After a successful run,all the adulation makes ‘Sivaji’ feel over-confident about his game.
In one such match ‘Sivaji’ makes a faulty move resulting in a major accident. This accident leads to a major set back in his career and it leaves him jobless, homeless and bankrupt. He gets sacked by his Sponsors and faces severe financial crunch to pay back his installments and loan payments. The banks auction everything including his house and furniture and the family will be just left with nothing.
The rest of the story is all about how Sivaji and Jaya get back on to the track and how Sivaji emerges as a winner.
 
Though the story of the film is very commercial and formulaic, the sentimental turn in Raj’s film is heartfelt. But what is particularly appealing is that none of the characters crib or mope around. Instead, they tackle every problem with resilience and boldly.
The part where ‘Sivaji’ loses everything and struggles with the family is borrowed from Cinderella Man (Russel Crowe)
 
Technical :
Thanks to the talented DOP Soumik Haldar,coz every frame of the film oozes Kolkata, from the environs around Sivaji’s practice arena to the city roads.
Kolkata hasn’t changed much in the past 10 years; there’s still a strange, almost eerie sense of recognition of landmarks and familiar sights more than a decade later.
Since Yuva, Kolkata has received its share of screen exposure (most recently in Meri Pyaari Bindu), but the city will always be best known to movie buffs as the home of Mr Satyajit Ray.
Even today, the Howrah Bridge is one of Kolkata’s top tourist attractions, and many of the visitors aren’t interested in going on it . They’re there to stand and capture it from a distance.
What makes ‘Chaamp’ a special film is that it concentrates on characters, not sports. It would be disingenuous to say that the climactic boxing match is unimportant – it is, after all the movie’s centerpiece – but that’s not all the movie is about. There are only two or 3 major fights – one at the beginning and one at the end. In between, every screen moment is used to develop Sivaji as a person.
He is not traditional invincible hero material here – he’s real,polite and has limited aspirations. Nevertheless, there’s something likable about the guy, and it has its root in the gentle, caring way he treats Jaya and respects his Boss and Mother.
Though the film seem to have few long, slow and dragged moments in the second half, the director made sure that the climax is emotional and effective so that the audience walks out with a happy feeling.
Raj Chakravarthy films always have great music and this film too is no exception. The title track song by Raftaar is quite good. The choreography of all the boxing matches are of Hollywood standards.
The Production values by Dev Entertainment Ventures are grand.
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Performances :
 
Dev is amazing in the role of Sivaji. He plays with utmost conviction and honesty in this film.
Debutant Rukmini Maitra is sweet and very spontaneous. I am in love with her dimples.
Veteran actor Chiranjeet Chakraborty is excellent as the boxing coach. The talented Priyanka Sarkar was very refreshing.
 
Verdict :
 
Chaamp is not a flawless motion picture, but it is a feel-good film, and well worth another look.Then again, there’s lot more beneath. It talks about taking responsibility for one’s own problems instead of finding an easy way out.
WORTH A WATCH ( Only running in Kolkata, I guess)

My Review : BinRoye Episode 9

This was another well-paced episode of Bin Roye Drama which had good level of development to its credit which added an interesting twist to the story and started a new chapter in the live of Saba. Even though this episode had its share of loopholes but the best thing about Bin Roye so far is that it is a beautiful light family drama. All the characters easy to relate to. It was truly refreshing to watch someone like Saba who couldn’t control her emotions & her outburst looked so natural & real. Undoubtedly Mahira Khan is one of the best actors in the world. Mahira Khan was the star of the show tonight. Mahira Khan hasn’t only done complete justice to her role but you look forward to Saba’s scenes because of her. Hamayun Saeed & Armeena Khan are really good as the suporting cast, they bring in a lot of value to the show.

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Synopsis :

This episode opened with Saba talking to her Dadi and requesting her to call her back home as she feels highly uncomfortable staying in Irtaza’s house. Dadi tries her best to make Saba control her feelings & think positive. Aamir drops in again and tries to woo Saba but like always fails to impress her. Irtaza brings up  ‘Aamir’s proposal before Saba & ends up making Saba angry who very  rudely snaps at Irtaza for forcing her. Later Saman finally conceives a baby boy. The drama takes a time leap of many months where we are shown that Saba’s family are still deciding on Saba getting married to Aamir but Saba angrily puts a put down.

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Once again dadi and Saba’s scenes were quite good. The logic dadi gave Saba for hiding her feelings was very relevant. Dadi has been shown as someone who loves Saba and is like a friend to her. These scenes are very heart-warming especially because Saba used to share her feelings with dadi long before Saman came to live with them.

Overall, This was another simple yet effective episode of Bin Roye Drama. Every scene in this episode added something new to the story. Right now like always Saba’s character is holding my interest more than any other. The preview of the next episode showed just how  Saman is coming to know about Saba’s feelings towards Irtiza.

How many of you watched this latest episode? Don’t forget to share your thoughts about it.

 

 

My Review : M.S Dhoni : The Untold Story

Prelude :

I clearly remember, it was 2011, I was in Bangalore Final Year MBA. Sitting along with my classmates at the hostel Mesh, witnessing History.
Twenty-eight years on from the match that transformed the history of world cricket, India recaptured the crown that Kapil Dev and his men first lifted at Lord’s in 1983, MS Dhoni trumped a poetic century from Mahela Jayawardene to pull off the highest run-chase ever achieved in a World Cup final.
But run by run, over by over, minute by minute, India picked themselves up, dusted themselves down, and defeated Sri Lanka with a determination that a lesser group of men could not have begun to muster, amid the sure knowledge that several billion countrymen were investing all their hopes in their actions.
The man behind this success was non other than our very own Ranchi born Living Legend ‘Mahi’ MS Dhoni.

So the movie talks about ‘The Man you know..the Journey you Don’t’

Film One Liner :

The movie follows the journey of Mahendra Singh Dhoni, a budding cricketer from Ranchi becoming the most successful captain of Indian Cricket Team .

Technical :

The film opens with the 2011 World Cup..esp the turning point.

We see the back of the captain’s head, as he, watches a wicket fall and pulls his Number Seven jersey on, & chooses to bat instead instead of letting the padded-up batter walk out to play.

The ending is known…we won the World Cup.

Neeraj Pandey focuses more attention to what came before & how Dhoni became the living legend Dhoni.

The screen-play only focuses on the details of his days of struggle than from his tenure as star wicket-keeper-batsman-captain of the Indian cricket team.
Barring few interesting good scenes, the movie is entertaining but doesn’t have much to offer,.

The 3 hour long film doesn’t discuss or show us about the controversies: There is only one scene where he and a young Yuvraj Singh walk past each other, post that scene, there is not a single scene with any other cricketer. ( there should have been)

The portion talking about Dhoni’s first love who dies just as the relationship was about to turn serious, should have been totally avoided as it was not necessary to the film at all. It seemed forced, just to show Dhoni as a vulnerable character.

The best part of the film, is the first half, which talks about the life in a small town (Ranchi), a family getting by on humble means and yet being able to support the super talented lad who dreams big & is willing to work for it.
Up till here, Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s story, the mostly untold part for most of us, holds us. It inspires us & tells us that anyone can do it The second half begins the movie begins to falter, as it has nothing much to offer.
We introduced to Two romances arrive back to back (Disha Patani, Kiara Advani, both immensely gorgeous, but reduced to small roles). There are songs & romances which unfortunately increase the duration of the film.

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The movie now entirely focuses on Dhoni who is shown as the one man army.
His teammates, which include Indian cricketing greats (Saurav Ganguly, Sachin Tendulkar and others), are seen in replay footages, either from the back or as voice overs.
Frankly speaking,There is no dressing room conversation scenes with his team-mates.These scenes, if incorporated, could have been interesting.

In few parts, the films has all its details in place—the many stadiums in small towns, the coal mines, the railway stations, the Mecon colony etc..everything looked so real.

The film brilliantly shows Dhoni’s family members and friends watch Dhoni bat on television, sitting superstitiously in the same positions each time, developing their own rituals & getting angrily each time Dhoni gets out.

The cinematography by Mr Santosh was okay..the following camera treatment often turned blurred in most of the scenes causing irritation to your eyes-(

Performances :

Sushant Singh Rajput nails the character Dhoni with a lot of perfection..getting the body language & voice perfectly. This will be hi s career defining role for sure.

Kiara Advani & Disha Patani look immensely gorgeous…but do not have much screen presence.

The amazing support of other characters in the background adds a lot to Sushant’s performance at the centre—be it Anupam Kher as the insecure father, or Rajesh Sharma as the funny bengali coach Banerjee.

All the performances looks genuine & well performed.

Verdict :

MS Dhoni – The Untold Story is more of a Hagiography than a biopic.An entertaining film for the masses. Worth the watch.

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I Support Mahira Khan, Whatsoever

She is a Superstar, Super Mom,a great human being, a talented actor; she is the one & only my favourite Mahira Khan .I love her not only because I’m her biggest fan but because of her good humble nature.

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Few days ago, I was in tears after I saw this news on TV, where the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) seeks to eliminate the presence of Pakistani talent in India.

The film workers association of Raj Thackeray‘s party had given a 48-hour period to all Pakistani artistes to leave their country otherwise they will do it themselves, forcefully.

I am totally unhappy and sad with this verdict. This isn’t the first time, this is happening. In October last year, Shiv Sena activists had threatened and announced plans to hinder promotions of the actors’ upcoming movie, Raees (Which will now release in Jan 2017)

I just want to say that Mahira Khan is an actor and not a politician… Let’s leave the politics aside coz celebrities are not responsible at all. Banning Pakistani talent will not stop terrorism. Stopping them from working here is not the solution.

If Indian actors can work anywhere in the world, why can’t Pakistani actors work in India. I don’t think we should stop something because of politics. Why can’t people from the neighbouring country come here and work? Mahira Khan means the world to me, so whether she is an Indian or Pakistani it does not matter, she is & will always remain my favourite actor & favourite person.

The reason I am writing this letter is to express my most enthusiastic support to my favourite actor Mahira Khan as I believe that everyone has the freedom to work where ever they want & a power house talent like Mahira Khan should have no limits. She deserves the world.

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I’m saying this because I know for a fact, that she is an amazing human being & also a very hard working actor.

I have always admired her work, her kindness. She is a complete woman, who is simply gorgeous and gifted with magnificent acting talent & a golden heart.

I cannot imagine any other actor taking her position.

It is only because of her good work and the love of her fans across the globe has made Mahira Khan one of the most accomplished actors in the Pakistan Industry today.

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So my favourite Mahira Khan, all I can say is that I’m supporting you and will always support you. Please don’t be disheartened..We are always there for you.

Frankly speaking, I have never come across anyone as good as you. We Mahirians love you; I hope & I am dead sure that all will be fine & we will meet very soon.

#IStandWithMahiraKhan #ISupportMahiraKhan

Yours Biggest Fan on earth

Deep Basu 

My Review : PARCHED

So, the most awaited Ajay Devgan film production ‘Parched’ has finally released, Parched is actually a year old film. It premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival in September 2015 and since then has traveled to various film festivals, winning awards.

In fact, it is already available on Netflix in the US. Finally people in India can experience a film that has been praised across the world.

Last week we had Aniruddha Roy Chowdhury’s Pink that told the story of three women. Parched tells us the story about Rani (Tannishta Chatterjee), Lajjo (Radhika Apte) and Bijli (Surveen Chawla).
While Pink had three women from the Capital city coming together fighting injustice, Parched deals with the same women in a different setting, far far away from the city.

Plot :

The film revolves around 3 women living an unwanted life in a village of Rajasthan in the north-western region of India, which still suffers from old, age-ridiculed traditions like forced child marriages and other social issues like financial difficulties, maritial rape etc

Rani (Tannishtha Chatterjee), who has been a widow since young age, is trying to get her son, Gulab (Riddhi Sen), married to a beautiful girl, Janki (Lehar Khan), from the neighboring village.
Then there is Lajjo (Radhika Apte), a friend of Rani. They both are skilled and work for a local entrepreneur named Kishan (Sumeet Vyas). Lajjo is childless and wants to conceive desperately but fails. Due to this, her alcoholic husband, Manoj, batters her every night. The third woman is Bijli (Surveen Chawla), a local dancer, who is a feast for the eyes of village men. She not just dances but fulfils inner desires of many men during dry, sensuous nights of the village.

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The men of village fear the development of the women and want to live the lifestyle left by their forefathers. The entwined story of these 3 women shows how they live in a controlled world, forced in by tradition, but in their private spaces, they talk about love, sex, and their dreams for the future.

The twist to the story comes when Rani discovers Janki is dishonored in her village, Lajjo is tired of the brutality of her husband, and Bijli is jealous of a new girl who might replace her.

This leads to a journey of freedom.

Technical :

The conversations the three women have is the best part of the film – their conversations are bold, funny & filled with giggles.(Esp their Sex Talk)
The screen play could have been a little more interesting & tighter…the movie tends to become slightly boring & slows down post intermission.

The concept & theme explored in this film is nothing new or fresh..but Director Leena Yadav has given it a fresh execution.

Few scenes, especially the scenes showcasing a great deal of violence unleashed on the women, are very harsh.

The film is beautifully shot by Mr Russell Carpenter (Titanic, Jobs). He adds a lot of value to the film, especially the erotic rural love making scene between Adil Hussain & Radhika Apte shot inside a cave, looks so beautiful & aesthetically choreographed.

Performances :

All the three of the main actors Radhika Apte Surveen Chawla & Surveen Chawla perform very well in their respective roles & characters.

Actor Sayani Gupta shines in a small role as Champa, Sumeet Vyas is fantastic & Mr Adil Hussain is simply brilliant in that small silent role.
Upcoming actor Riddhi Sen is simply amazing as the spoilt son of Rani.

Verdict :

Overall, Parched is not a memorable tale of women empowerment but genuinely shines. Give it a try this week.

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My Review : PINK

Prelude :

I know I am late, really late, I guess..for the first time.
Due to my bad decision to watch Raaz Reboot first over ‘Pink’ made me push PINK for the weekday show-(
So now, after watching Pink, I feel quite relieved & happier..will never commit such a mistake again.
Now, I can proudly say that I have watched ‘Pink’ like others & have thoroughly loved it. I am part of the ‘PINK’ bandwagon now.
Have you ever thought..Why the film makers of this film decided to title this very film with name ‘Pink’ ?? I am sure some of you know why.
Well ! according to me, the colour Pink represents a format which is associated with women. It’s a colour that symbolises / used for women empowerment.
But this very film is not about women empowerment or rape either.
It basically talks about three working girls who live independently, and unwillingly encounters a very unfortunate & horific incident, what transpires thereafter and what happens to them and their lives, how they face circumstances, how they face society, how they gain their respect, and all of it inside a court of law.

Plot :

Three girls – Minal Arora (Taapsee Pannu), Falak Ali (Kirti Kulhari) and Andrea (Andrea Tariang) are staying together as tenants in a posh South Delhi locality and are normal working professionals in their respective fields.
One night, after a rock concert they accept a dinner invitation from Rajveer (Angad Bedi), who is the nephew of a powerful politician from South Delhi, and two others to a resort.

Finding the opportunity, the three men separate the three girls from each other. Rajveer gets close and and tries to molest Minal (Taapsee Pannu) and her two roommates,despite they saying NO to them.
Minal inoreder to protect herself, impulsively picks up a bottle and smashes it on Rajveer’s eye, leaving him bleeding.

To seek revenge, Rajveer and his friends try to vacate the girls from their houses and threaten them over the phone.
Minal is forced to approach the police with the intention to file an FIR against Rajveer and his friends.
Due to Rajveer’s influence, Minal is then charged for ‘Attempt to murder’ and for soliciting & the other girls are labelled as co-accused.

Deepak Sehgall (Amitabh Bachchan) is a retired lawyer suffering from bipolar disorder and has an ailing wife (Mamata Shankar). He is also a neighbour of the 3 girls .
He notices their troubles and after consultation with his wife, takes it upon himself to represent the girls in the court.
The rest of the film revolves around how Deepak fights the girls’ case against these influential boys.

Technical :

After the sweet film Piku, Shoojit Sircar once again teams up with Amitabh Bachchan but this time for a completely different kind of film.
Pink addresses some important issues like women safety in the city and that how Power influences & manipulates court judgements.

The first half of the film — doesn’t show us much about the incident or even let us hear any kind of detailed visual narration — it is very cleverly built on silences,making all of us guessing between the lines.

This film instantly renminded me of Jodi Foster’s The Accused in which her character is raped in a bar: just because she was wearing a short skirt, and was drunk.
Similar thing is shown here – ‘aisi ladkiyon ke saath toh aisa hi hota hai’.

The general perception of our male dominated society is measured by the length of the female clothing and a men usually decides what is okay for a women & what is not -(
This attitude has unfortunately made even the women be part of it.

How can a person so loosely used terms like ‘Slut etc’ for a random girl just based on what they wear, how they speak or whom they chose to befriend?????

Three cheers to the Director, every emotion, frustration and the pain, has been captured beautifully and brought out very convincingly by the characters, the direction aspect is the high point of the film.

Congratulations Aniruddha Roy Chowdhury for his amazing first Hindi movie and I willl personally recommend you guys to watch all his bengali films from now on..its amazing.

If any film post Vicky Donor has Shoojit Sarcar’s name attached to it brings us with certain expectations and each time we are satiosfied as the viewer.
Special thanks to Ritesh Shah for the intriguing story and screenplay.

Please don’t miss the end credits -Lastly, it shows as to what actually happened that night with the three girls.

This keeps the viewer hooked till the very last credit role. SUPERB.

Performances :

The film is remarkably well-cast. Special thanks to Mr Jogi Mallang
Taapsee Pannu plays Meenal, is very natural & convincing.
She is the next big thing of Bollywood.
Kirti Kulhari plays Falak, has the a splendid job, she is one under-rated actor who needs to be given only good opportunities from now on. Andrea Tariang plays Andrea, plays her character veryu realistically where she is described as the ‘North-Eastern,’ as if that is all that counts.

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Piyush Mishra is wonderful as the lawyer of the opponent team & who is hell bend in getting these girls behind the bars & punished. His character continues to label them as the ‘women of low character,’. It’s devastating.

Angad Bedi looks & plays the part of the notorious Rajveer with a lot of ease & style. He fitted the character so well.

Actor Vijay Varma is simply superb as Rajveer’s friend Ankit, who makes you hate him & also fear him at the same time.
Not to forget Mamta Malik as the Haryanvi cop, who gets her accent, gestures & body language bang on.
The film also uses a lot of familiar Delhiwalas in small roles: Vinod Nagpal, Sudhanva Deshpande, Dibang.

Our very own Mamta Shankar ‘s subplot was well put & she did a great job-)
Mr Dhritiman Chaterji as the strict judge was excellent in a small role.

Lastly ,Our Big B Mr Amitabh Bachchan nails it once again as the Bipolar disoder Lawyer Deepak Seghal. He is the best part of ‘Pink’

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Verdict :

So, a friendly girls is not hinting for sex. A shared drink doesn’t mean a woman is available. Finally everything boils down to a woman’s choice and consent.
Overall, The Film Pink is a very relevant film & also something which will remain with you long after you’ve left the theater.
It’s a must watch for all men, all women, and even the growing up kids to realize why “NO means a NO”.

If some of you have still not watched, please go; and spread the word. A MUST WATCH

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My Review : AKIRA

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Prelude :

You come across many movies in Bollywood, which have an above average story-line & the characters are seen a dozen times over, and then a change of track happens in such a pleasant fashion that you’re hooked into a very fulfilling watching experience.

Akira directed by AR Murgados is one such film that has everything that might count as a cliche but the best part about this film is that it never descends into mediocrity or becomes too predictable.

By the way, Akira is a remake of a 2011 Tamil film called ‘Mouna Guru’, In comparison to the south version, Mr AR Murgados has made the necessary changes to fit the sentiments of the Bollywood audience.
In Mouna Guru, the main protagonist was actually was played by a Boy & in this version Sonakshi takes the lead.

Film Highlight :

Time plays an essential role in crime thrillers. The sequence right before the intermission is an example — the protagonist Akira is one of three youngsters lined up by a group of corrupt policemen to be killed in a fake encounter in the reserve forests What goes wrong over the next few minutes is shown in proper detail. No jump cuts. No fast editing. Time stays true to character.

Plot :

College goer Akira has a bad past, due to this, she always finds it difficult to adjust with the society that she lives in. As a result, she is unable to control her anger and often ends up in trouble.
Her unpredictable behavior becomes a source of constant worry for her mother and brother.
She comes to the city and stays in a hostel where the trouble begins. Meanwhile, while traveling, Assistant Commissioner Govind Rane & his colleagues witness a car accident. When they are about to take the victim to a nearby hospital, they come across a huge stash of cash. The policemen kill the (half dead) victim and flee to Mumbai with the money.
Then the sincere police officer SP Rabia, takes up this case. A cluster of lies, ego clash at the hostel and family’s ignorance brings innocent Akira into this crime plot.
The rest is a racy roller-coaster ride that forms the climax.

Technical :

The screenplay is racy through out the pre-intermission point but post intermission the movie begins to decline and the dialogues lack the punch & impact.
Not all characters are well etched out or well written.
Few scenes are badly edited as you can clearly notice continuity jerks & unmatched cuts. The pacing seems jerky at places.
The climax looks very stupid & unconvincing. Akira finally has to become the sacrificial goat for the good of the community.

John Stewarts’s background scores fits the film perfectly. And the surprise factor is that all the songs are well placed in the film. RD Raja Shekher’s excellent camera works, few realistic locations needs a special mention.
Amit Sadh aka Siddhart plays Akira’s love interest as the brother of his elder brother’s wife. But the romance is lost in a script that focuses on crime.

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Performances:

All the characters in the film have done a decent job; whether it is the sincere police officer SP Rabia played by Konkona Sen Sharma or the college principal or Akira’s mental asylum friend or the three cops who end up doing a series of murder to hide one.
Amit Sadh, who appears as Akira’s love interest, does his part well too.
Sonakshi Sinha has tried something different & her effort shows through out.

Tamil actress Raai Laxmi is totally wasted-(

Finally, Anurag Kashyap takes the cake, he plays the corrupt cop Govind Rane with a lot of ease & swag. Mr Kashyap should take up acting seriously from now on.

Verdict :

Akira doesn’t boast of anything spectacular, or a perfect script or a flawless film but worth checking out if you like crime thrillers. A word of warning though. Some sequences may be inappropriate for children.
Give it a try this weekend-)